A few weeks ago when I was talking about John Reuben, I said until John Reuben I disliked hip-hop. Why this wasn’t a complete lie, it wasn’t totally true. As I mentioned in my write up on UHF I liked Coolio’s Gangsta’s Paradise but also like every white suburban kid born since 1980... I always loved the Beastie Boys.
Why do white rockers love the Beastie Boys? It’s not just because they’d always mix in rock guitars to their songs, but it’s also not a racist thing. White kids like the Beastie Boys for the same reason anyone likes the Beastie Boys, they’re super sincere. If they rapped about growing up in the Ghetto and their struggles no one like them, instead they wrote 13 songs on their debut album about hitting on college chicks, drinking Heineken beer and eating at White Castle. This is one of the many reasons why it’s the only album by a white rap group to get a perfect rating from The Source magazine, to quote Reverend Run ‘Real respects Real’.
Licensed to Ill is the greatest party record ever made and is one of the best rap debuts of all time. MCA, Ad Rock and Mike D all have their own style of rapping from Ad Rock’s borderline screaming, to MCA’s mumbles and Mike D’s high pitch voices they mixed their Punk Rock based with hip-hop and created a sound that was undeniably their own. They drew quick comparisons to Run DMC (which makes sense as Run DMC originally wrote Slow & Low).
While songs like Rhyming and Stealing and Fight For Your Right (To Party) have a heavy metal meets hip-hop sound. Meanwhile tracks like The New Style and Posse In Effect sound like old school late 70s-early 80’s rap. Regardless of the rapping styles every song creates an atmosphere if wanting to party with friends.
The stand out tracks to me will always be Paul Revere which shows off their incredible story telling styles and Hold It Now, Hit It which is evidence that no one trades off rhymes like the Beastie Boys.
For years this was the only rap I listened to because it was the only rap that was played on modern rock stations. To this day the album still introduces young kids into what rap can be.
When he's not trying to rap along with MCA, Ad Rock and Mike D you can find Matt Kelly tweeting, hosting the Saint Mort Show or writing for Geekscape.net (this week his guilty pleasures article was on The Presidents of the United States of America)
92. Queen: Sheer Heart Attack ----->